In this five-part series, Taylor McDowell will introduce the basics of drumming including stick grip techniques, drum beats, rudiments and exercises. Taylor’s series also covers warming up, utilizing the metronome and live performance tips and tricks.

All you need are drum sticks and a drum or whatever you have around the house to make a DIY version. Videos will be posted on Arts at the Palace’s website (

About McDowell

McDowell’s first love is drumming—on anything and everything. Despite a severe hearing impairment, he has become an instructor, a pit musician and a street performer, busking throughout the Utica area and even NYC. He studied privately for many years with Syracuse-area percussionist Jimmy Johns. McDowell served as the drummer for Rent at Catherine Cummings Theatre, as assistant percussionist for Syracuse Stage and has performed at myriad CNY events. He’s a three-time first-place winner at MSC Talent Competitions and was a finalist at the Guitar Center’s “Drum-Off.”

By day, McDowell is a bit of a techno-geek. He earned an associate’s degree in computer information systems and a bachelor’s of technology in application software development at Morrisville State College. During his years at MSC, he was (and remains) the only Global Game Jam participant to solely create a video game containing original music, artwork and code. He was also a member of Omnicron Delta Kappa and Phi Beta Lambda and graduated with honors.

Post graduation, he worked for many years as a programmer analyst for PAR tTechnology and is employed as a web developer for digital scholarship and digital media collections at Hamilton College.

In an attempt to combine his love of drumming and affinity for technology, McDowell created GeekSalad—an informative and entertaining YouTube channel. You can also find him on Facebook (Taylor-The Frontman Drummer) and Instagram (@taylormcdowelldrums).

By martha

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